Marilyn Ursenbach Krammer was born April 9, 1933 in Lethbridge, Alberta, and passed away in her home July 7, 2021 at the age of 88.
Marilyn is the “littlest angel” daughter of Octave Willis and Jessie (Redd) Ursenbach and spent most of her life in Lethbridge except for four years in Toronto as a young girl while her father presided over the Canadian Mission and a year in Calgary where she attended university. Being a young teen immersed with the family in a rigorous, war-time missionary assignment gave her rare experience that led to life-long faith in Jesus Christ, and devoted service both in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and in the community.
She married Louis James Krammer on August 3, 1953, and together they reared five children, mostly while living in the house on 6th Avenue “A” South where she had lived as a child. It was Marilyn’s home for 63 years of her life. It was the place where she jumped into creative projects with each of her children, clothing them in the most awesome Halloween costumes, demonstrating scrumptious kitchen skills, helping them make the most amazing Valentines for their classmates, and even guiding a son through his first woodworking project: a shoe-shine box for Dad.
Hers was a railroad family, and during her husband’s long career at CPRail, Marilyn prepared countless lunch-box meals for him at all hours of the day and night. Lou taught her to golf, supported her willingly in her activities in church and community, and took the family on memorable vacations to Waterton, Crowsnest Pass, Kamloops, Vancouver, Regina, Calgary, Montana, Wyoming, and Utah.
Marilyn introduced her children to the influences of both fine music and fun music, rendering hymns and classical pieces on the piano, then leading singalongs about “a loverly bunch o’ coconuts,” “a train going through the middle of the house,” and losing “a meatball when somebody sneezed.” When her teens responded with loud and less refined tunes, she tolerated it well and was happy to duet her piano with someone’s guitar, flute, trumpet, or saxophone. For many years and even in her youth, Marilyn’s devotion to music also blessed her church where she applied herself in supervising, performing, or conducting the music of worship.
Marilyn taught by example how to be diligently engaged in meaningful work and worthy pursuits. She taught at Fleetwood School, then, as a mom, volunteered in the Home and School Association, and served on the Innovations Board in Edmonton with the Department of Education. Her older children remember her busily selling Stanley Home Products. For twelve years she was the face of Customer Service at the Sears store, adept at making things right when they went wrong, and applying the most artistic of gift-wrapping skills.
Creativity was her hallmark. Her mother was a talented painter, and Marilyn drank deeply of that artistic influence. She painted, sewed, carved rubber stamps, taught calligraphy at the Lethbridge Community College and volunteered for many years at several hospitals and nursing homes teaching crafts. Glass grapes, string art, novel wreaths, clever costumery, ornaments – she always had some project in progress.
Marilyn was a long-standing member of the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers wherein she pursued a love for her pioneer heritage and preservation of family history. She labored for the placement of local historical monuments and markers, and carefully researched and wrote eloquently about her forebears.
Marilyn’s complete dedication to her husband and family was only rivaled by her devotion to God. Faith in Jesus Christ coloured her every thought and action. Her life-time of church service included teaching, musical involvement, presiding over the Relief Society, membership on the Stake Primary board, and, when her own daughter became the Relief Society president, appointing herself to be “special assistant to the Relief Society president.”
Louis passed away in 2002. As she now goes to be at his side again (a reality of which she is absolutely confident), Marilyn is survived by her children: Kirt (Connie) Krammer, Centerville, Utah; Karen Iwaasa, Lethbridge; Debra (Bradley) Wilde, Billings, Montana; Rodger Krammer, Provo, Utah; and Randy (Karen) Krammer, Coalhurst, Alberta; 26 grandchildren, 41 great grandchildren; her sister Carmen Rich, Utah; her brothers, Garry Ursenbach, Calgary/Waterton, and Wayne Ursenbach, Utah. In addition to her husband, Marilyn was predeceased by her parents, her sister, Verena, and two grandsons.
A Funeral Service will be held at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, NORTH STAKE CHAPEL (560 Highlands Boulevard West, Lethbridge) on Wednesday July 14, 2021 at 11:00am. The service will be live broadcast at this obituary page, prior to the service
Friends are welcome to meet with the family on Tuesday July 13, 2021 from 7:00 to 8:00pm at the church from 10:00 to 10:45am prior to the Funeral on Wednesday.
The family wishes to thank the home health caregivers that assisted her, and the staff-members and fellow residents at Seasons Retirement Community who made her final years pleasant with their friendship and service. Marilyn loved her home among them.
In lieu of flowers, Marilyn invites you to contribute to LDS Humanitarian Services (https://philanthropies.churchofjesuschrist.org/humanitarian-services).
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